The Eastside varsity girls soccer team continued its struggle through the 2014 season Tuesday at Sharp Stadium against visiting Lanier, giving up five goals in a 6-0 loss to the Lady Longhorns.
The loss keeps the Lady Eagles winless in region play, while Lanier stayed perfect in the region and held on to its top-25 state ranking.
Eastside allowed just one goal in the second half while keeper Alex Morvick picked up 15 saves in goal, and coach Joel Singleton said he could see the effort the Lady Eagles put forth in the second half.
“I liked the way we fought today,” Singleton said. “We knew the odds were stacked against us. Lanier was undefeated in the region last year and they have everyone back (including) 12 seniors. We had a tough first half and they had some really good shots.
“We gave them space (and) coming into the game we talked about (not) backing off of them … and they did that on several goals,” he said. “Second half, I’m real proud of the effort. We talked at halftime about trying to win more 50-50 balls and fighting to the end. I felt like we did that.”
It took nearly nine minutes for the Lady Longhorns to score their first goal, but when Lanier finally broke through, they broke through with a mission – netting three goals in the opening 20 minutes of play.
Tori Wyant put Lanier on the scoreboard first at the 31:59 mark in the opening period and nine minutes later, Ashley Burton put the Lady Longhorns’ second goal on the scoreboard, taking a pass on a throw in and cutting to the middle of the field before firing off a shot.
With a 2-0 lead, Burton netted her second goal of the game with 20:56 remaining in the half, following up a Bethany Blanton shot that hit the crossbar. Burton got a head on the rebounding ricochet, redirecting the ball to the goal where it found the back of the net.
Amy Groth added another Lanier score two minutes later while the Lady Eagles struggled to maintain possession on their half of the field.
Lanier capped off the first half with another Groth score with 5:46 to go in the period, this time on a rolling shot from the top of the penalty box that bounced between Morvick’s legs.
The Lady Longhorns closed the half with 20 shots on goal in the period, while Morvick tallied seven first-half saves.
Eastside’s offense managed just one shot on goal in the opening period and the Lady Eagles’ offensive woes continued into the second half.
Hannah Alwes recorded Eastside’s lone second-half shot on goal and Lanier’s Wyant became the third Lady Longhorn with two goals in the win with 17:30 left to play, scoring off a pass from Beatruz Calva from the top of the box. Wyant send a low, bounding shot to the left corner of the goal that found its mark, pushing Lanier ahead 6-0.
Morvick kept Lanier off the scoreboard over the final 17 minutes, including back-to-back saves off a flurry of Lanier shots with four minutes remaining in the contest.
Eastside will have a chance to redeem itself in region play next week on the road against Monroe Area.